Lexington prostitution sting results in arrests for child sex trafficking
The Lexington Police Department has arrested India Tykeyeh Cuyler, 23, and Donnell Salethian Woodard,29, both from Columbia, during a prostitution investigation. Chief Police Chief Terrence Green announced the arrests, Thursday.
On Nov. 21, officers from the Lexington Police Department, along with agents from the Lexington County Multi-Agency Narcotics Enforcement Team task force, conducted a prostitution sting at a hotel. Undercover officers posing as “Johns” answered ads on both backpage.com as well as craigslist.com. Undercover ads were also posted posing as prostitutes.
At approximately 8 p.m., a female, later identified as a 16-year old juvenile, came to the hotel room to participate in prostitution. She was immediately identified as a victim and later taken into emergency protective custody after medical treatment.
During the investigation it was determined she had been coerced into prostitution by Cuyler and Woodard who had transported her to the hotel. Both subjects were arrested in the parking lot while they were waiting on the minor victim.
Cuyler and Woodard have both been charged with Sex Trafficking of a Minor. Cuyler was additionally charged with Driving Under Suspension. Woodard was also charged with Simple Possession of Marijuana and was wanted on a probation-related matter. Both are currently still being held without bond at the Lexington County Detention Center.
The juvenile revealed to investigators that she had been staying with Cuyler and Woodard at a hotel in West Columbia and that another 16 year old juvenile female was also being used for prostitution.
The West Columbia Police Department was notified and officers were able to make contact with the second juvenile victim. She provided a similar story as the initial victim concerning the coercion into prostitution by Cuyler and Woodard. The investigation by the West Columbia Police Department led to additional charges of three counts of Sex Trafficking of a Minor.